Grab a blanket, bring a chair, or stretch out on the grass!

The tickets to see the outdoor screening of Bohemian Rhapsody at Clevedon Hall in July went like the proverbial hot cakes! I missed out! But not this time! I have it on good authority that there are still tickets left for the outdoor screenings in September, so as soon as I’ve finished this blog post, I’m booking!

Bohemian Rhapsody at Clevedon Hall

The question is, for which film? The Salthouse Fields on 5th September to see Fishernman’s Friends or on 6th September to see Yesterday or Bohemian Rhapsody Sing-Along at the Portishead Lido on September 7th? 

I saw Fisherman’s Friends back in March and loved it but unfortunately didn’t make it to the session where the Barnacle Buoys were playing and they will be there, serenading us before the film on the Salthouse Fields.

There is also a pop-up bar, courtesy of the Salthouse Pub, gourmet fish’n’chips, and Hector the Coffee Van will be there.

Straight forward view

Fisherman’s Friends is a really uplifiting film, inspired by the true-life story of an all-male acapella sea-shanty group from Port-Isaac. A fast-living, cynical London music executive  heads to a remote Cornish village on a stag weekend where he’s pranked by his boss  into trying to sign a group of shanty singing fishermen. He becomes the ultimate ‘fish out of water’ as he struggles to gain the respect or enthusiasm of the unlikely boy band and their families (including Tuppence Middleton) who value friendship and community over fame and fortune. As he’s drawn deeper into the traditional way of life he’s forced to re-evaluate his own integrity and ultimately question what success really means.

The Tag-a-Tile team will be fundraising at the Salthouse Fields which is another reason for me to go there because I haven’t yet bought my tile!

The Tag-a-Tile campaign is to raise money for the urgent roof restoration appeal. Curzon volunteers staff a Tag-a-Tile station inside the box office on Tuesdays from 10am to 2pm and 4.30pm to 6.30pm and Saturday mornings from 10.00am to 2.00pm


It’s a very simple but effective idea; you make a suggested donation of £10 to write a message on one of 12,833 tiles that will replace the old tiles that are in a very poor state.

Karen Edgington, Fundraising Campaign Manager, explains:

“You may choose to write a message in memory of a loved one, in celebration of your child’s birthday, a special memory of coming to the Curzon, draw a picture, a special poem or simply write a name. The community will literally become part of the very fabric of the building – just imagine in another 100-150 years time when they restore the roof once more and all these special messages will be revealed…”

The new Facebook page Your Curzon Charity will be sharing some pictures of “tagged” tiles as they are created and photos of all the tiles will be collated in a photobook in the box office in 2020.


The Curzon has such an interesting history, it opened as The Picture House in 1912, five days after the Titanic sank and the opening screening raised money for the survivors and victims families. The cinema was greatly expanded ten years later without losing a single screening, making it one of the world oldest purpose-built continually operating cinemas in the world.


The community saved the Curzon from closure back in the 1990s and this year the cinema, which is a registered charity run by a small staff team and 142 volunteers, needs the community’s help once more.

Action to save the cinema in the 90s

For some time, rain water has been coming in and damaging the building. The ornate tin panelling which reaches throughout the building and is the earliest and most complete example known to survive in England, is rusting and deteriorating. Cinema staff and volunteers are concerned for the safety of their collection of 500 cinematic artefacts, some of which are exceptionally rare.

Until December 2018, the water damage was largely behind the scenes, but then water started to come into the main auditorium and the long-term future of the cinema is now at risk without an urgent and full roof restoration. The charity is now appealing to the community to help save the cinema once again.

An application has been submitted to the National Lottery Heritage Fund for £240,000 towards the project which is expected to cost in excess of £500,000. Donations from the community in recent years have accumulated to £60,000 and have been allocated to this project. Applications are also in progress to charitable trusts and foundations.

The Curzon is aiming to raise the final £100,000 from the local community and businesses. £16,000 has been raised since the roof appeal launched at the end of April.

They had a big boost to their campaign when Gromit stepped in with  Aardman Animations along with Howard Coggins from Living Spit, Niall Johnson, Ken Wheeler and Gavin Digby. Check out Aardman Animations here: and Living Spit here:

Gromit has made a special film to raise awareness of our leaky roof and much needed funds. Check it out here:

Anyway, back to my film choice! The second of the outdoor screenings on September 6th is Yesterday! After a freak accident, struggling singer/songwriter Jack (Himesh Patel) wakes up to find he is the only person who remembers The Beatles. Leaving him with their back-catalogue of unclaimed songs to share with the world and resulting in some weighty dilemmas! A rock-n-roll comedy about music, dreams, friendship and love in a parallel universe. Directed by Danny Boyle (Trainspotting, 28 Days Later, Slumdog Millionaire) and written by Richard Curtis (Four Weddings and a Funeral, Bridget Jones’s Diary, Love Actually)  two power-houses of British cinema, it’s a film that is sure to please and I have seen it! The question is, do I want to see it again al-fresco with friends and family?

Richard Curtis Danny Boyle and Himesh Patel

Finally, the ever-popular Bohemian Rhapsody Sing-Along, the foot-stomping celebration of Queen. The story of Freddie Mercury, the phenomenal lead man who defied stereotypes and broke with convention, becoming one of the most loved and highly regarded singers of contemporary music. Tracing their meteoric rise this film has drawn in expectational crowds and is sure to be a hit at the iconic setting of the Portishead Lido on September 7th.


In Sing-Along screenings, lyrics are shown on screen and attendees are encouraged to join in with hits such as the movie’s title track, ‘Don’t Stop Me Now’, ‘We Are The Champions’ and more.

I must admit this is very tempting, I’ve seen the film and loved every minute of it and I love so many of the songs. Interesting fact coming up! Did you know that ‘Bohemian Rhapsody’ is the most streamed song from the 20th century with 1.6 billion streams globally across all major streaming services at the end of 2018!

Much as I love the Portishead Lido and would benefit from the energising impact of a sing -along, I think I’m going to book for Fisherman’s Friends, the Barnacle Buoys and the opportunity to Tag-a-Tile with the added bonus of being able to walk there and enjoy a glass or two of wine!

About Curzon Cinema & Arts

Curzon Cinema & Arts has been at the centre of life in Clevedon, North Somerset, since 1912. A charity, run with support from volunteers, it is one of the UK’s few traditional, independent cinemas showing mainstream and art house films. The Grade 2 listed cinema has tremendous heritage value, locally, nationally and internationally.

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